Empowering Bodaboda Cyclist Clubs to Donate Blood for Mothers With Postpartum Hemorrhage After Delivery by Establishing Readily Available Blood Bank (BB)

Ifakara Health Institute
Organization Location: 
Morogoro, Tanzania

Over 28% of all maternal deaths in Tanzania are caused by postpartum hemorrhage (PPH). According to National Blood Transfusion Services (NTBS), 450,000 units of blood are required each year, but only 133,077 units are donated via voluntary basis, which is equal to 30% of total need. Despite established causes and prevention strategies in place, many mothers still experience PPH. Blood transfusion is an emergency lifesaving therapy to prevent death from PPH.

IHI proposes to organize the existing Bodaboda (motorcycle taxis) clubs to donate enough blood for mothers with PPH at a quarterly interval per year. IHI expects to succeed >80% of total demand to save the lives of mothers with PPH. The main purpose is to create a sustainable blood donation program among Bodaboda cyclists by covering their health insurance and providing no-cost blood (when needed) to alleviate blood scarcity related mortality among mothers with postpartum hemorrhage.

The proposed idea is unique because use of the peer pressure and reinforcement available in affinity groups such as cyclist clubs. Cyclists already donate irregularly in specific cases related to their club. Since they are aware that they are at heightened risk of road accidents and needing blood themselves, the promise of not having to pay for blood if they need it is attractive. It will also enable them to know their sexual transmitted diseases status including HIV and be linked to care early.